UK – Pernod Ricard, the world’s second-largest wine and spirits seller, has appointed Julia Massies, currently chief financial officer of Pernod Ricard EMEA & LATAM, to be the new Managing Director of Pernod Ricard UK, effective 1 September 2023.

Julia is replacing David Haworth, who has announced his retirement at the end of August after 34 years with the company.

Haworth’s tenure with Pernod Ricard has spanned multiple markets and leadership roles, beginning at Irish Distillers, and taking him to Germany, Greece, and the Czech Republic.

“It has been a privilege to work with so many talented people over so many years and now is a good time to do something else,” said Haworth.

 I’m confident in the long-term resilience of the UK market and that the team will maintain market momentum for PRUK with the support of an exceptional group of colleagues.”

Meanwhile, Julia, who joined Pernod Ricard in 2001 as business development manager after five years of consulting experience in the UK, Brazil, and France, has held various senior positions at the company.

Her positions included vice president, financial communication, and investor relations, before being promoted to CFO in 2021.

“I am thrilled to be joining the UK team as managing director. I have many fond memories from when I worked in the UK previously.,” Massies said.

“I can’t wait to get to know all our colleagues in the business, our customers, and our consumers. Together we will build on David’s legacy of winning in the market while delivering our ambitious diversity and environmental roadmaps.”

Julia will be tasked to continue the legacy of Haworth, who had doubled down to the RTD line, extending for its core spirits in recent years, including Malibu canned cocktails, Jameson Ginger & Lime, and a trio of Beefeater Gin and Tonics.

During a roundtable for the firm’s fiscal 2022 results in September, UK commercial director Ian Peart said the RTD sector has become “extremely dynamic and scalable” in the country and is a nine million nine-liter case market. The majority of RTDs are sold off-trade, he added.

Peart also noted that the RTD sector was starting to see segmentation with different price tiers, as well as canned cocktails.

In a recent financial call, the French distiller said the UK market saw sales growth for spirits, notably Absolut Vodka, Jameson, Malibu, and Martell.

Pernod also noted a -2% dip in the overall performance of its strategic wines, which the company attributed to “softness mostly from the UK”. The strategic wines portfolio includes Campo Viejo and Mumm Champagne.

“We’re interested in the premium part of that. Our current portfolio is about 20p a can above the average price within the category,” he noted. “That is something we will continue to follow. There are lots of opportunities for exciting innovation. It’s a way of supporting spirits brand launches.”

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